Jail Minister Who Previously Condemned Sivagangga Cluster and Arrogantly Skipped Quarantine Himself

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Slowly but surely people begin to see not only how “munafiq” (hypocrite)Muhyiddin Yassin is, but also how his bloated ministers freely abuse their power.

It was only last month that the backdoor prime minister warned the 32-million populations that the country could be forced into another Movement Control Order (MCO) if Covid-19 cases jump exponentially.

The PM lectured that the nation’s economy would suffer greatly if another lockdown is to be imposed again. He also warned that the potential loss would be in the region of RM2 billion – every day. A mandatory face mask rule has since been enforced. Every day, hundreds of people are being arrested for flouting RMCO (Recovery Movement Control Order).

But behind the scene, PM Muhyiddin had quietly granted permission to his Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister – Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali – to visit Turkey from July 3-7. The minister then attended the Parliament session on July 13. Clearly, he had breached the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act 1988 for skipping 14-day mandatory quarantine.

The government may argue that Turkey was categorised as a “green zone”. But it had more than 208,000 cases and 5,260 deaths (July 7). In comparison, ordinary Malaysians were not allowed to travel to neighbouring Singapore despite the country had only 45,000 cases and 26 deaths (July 7). Exactly why the minister was allowed to fly to Istanbul, but ordinary people could not cross to Singapore?

Looking at the number of Coronavirus cases and deaths, you don’t need a rocket scientist to tell that Turkey was more dangerous and deadlier than Singapore. What was so important that Minister Mohd Khairuddin must be given the green light to visit Turkey? Interestingly, in May, the PM boastfully said Malaysia was prepared to collaborate with Turkey to develop a Covid-19 vaccine.

Seriously? If Malaysia and Turkey have the expertise to develop the vaccine, then the US, China and Russia would have had developed time-travel machine already. Did Muhyiddin send his minister to Turkey on an official trip to talk about Coronavirus vaccine or was Mohd Khairuddin on a mission to solicit endorsement from President Erdogan to legitimise his backdoor government?

If the purpose of the visit was unofficial, it’s even worse. It means the backdoor prime minister was not only clueless and incompetent, but also extremely reckless in decision-making to the extent he can be considered incapacitated. How could he approve his minister’s private travel during a time when the world was in the middle of combating the pandemic?

The main issue, however, is not about the purpose of Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali’s visit to Turkey. The problem that has gotten people extremely upset and angry is the fact that the minister had failed to observe the mandatory 14-day quarantine upon his arrival from a foreign country under the National Security Council’s SOP (standard operating procedure).

The Ministry of Plantation, Industries and Commodities’ attempt to spin and twist the whole fiasco has resulted in a silly and ridiculous argument. In fact, it sounded more like insulting people’s intelligence when it argued that the minister was given a “special Covid-19 test” that produced a negative result after five hours. Yes, they could cook up an incredible story about a special test kit.

The source of the ministry claimed – “The special test was to enable the country’s leaders who go in and out of the country, including on personal matters, to undergo the test swiftly.” If such a special test does exist, why isn’t it made available to ordinary people who have to wait between 24 and 36 hours for the result upon a Covid-19 test?

But even if the so-called “special test” is only for the selected VIPs, which is already bad enough, the test is not foolproof. That was why, according to the SOPs developed by Muhyiddin’s own government, 14-day quarantine is still compulsory after the test. That was also why ordinary Malaysians who did not observe the quarantine have been consistently fined and even imprisoned.

Amusingly, Mohd Khairuddin was the same minister from the PAS Islamist party who had criticised the index case of the Sivagangga cluster for failing to comply with Covid-19 home quarantine rules after returning from India. The minister whined, moaned and bitched on Aug 4 – “It started with one person, two people, then now it has increased to more than 20 people that is enough to shock the nation.”

The munafiq PAS leader condemned the super spreader – “What is the cause? The failure to comply with the standard operating procedure (SOP). Again. The failure to comply with the SOP.” The super spreader in the Sivagangga cluster was linked to 57-year-old Nezar Mohamed Sabur Batcha, an Indian national with permanent resident status in Malaysia.

Nezar, identified as an index patient of the Sivagangga cluster, is the owner of Nasi Kandar Salleh in Napoh, Kedah, who returned to Malaysia from Sivagangga, Tamil Nadu, India on July 13. Upon arrival, he was given a Covid-19 screening at the KL International Airport (KLIA) but was initially tested negative. As per-SOP, he was put under a Home Surveillance Order but breached the quarantine rules.

Subsequent tests on the Nasi Kandar owner revealed positive results. By August 11, all hell broke loose as the cluster had spread from Kedah to the neighbouring states of Perlis and Penang. Some 5,645 people from the Sivagangga cluster had been screened, and out of the total, 45 tested positive. Nezar was fined RM12,000 and jailed five months for violating home quarantine orders.

Like the irresponsible restaurant owner, Minister Mohd Khairuddin could and should be charged under Section 22 (b) and punishable under Section 24 (a) of the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act 1988, which carries a maximum prison sentence of two years or a fine or both. Both individuals have selfishly threatened public health.

But unlike Nezar, the minister should be given a heavier penalty because as one of the country’s leaders, he should set a good example instead of abusing his position by flouting the 14-day quarantine period. At the very least, he should be slapped with the same penalty as the Nasi Kandar owner – RM12,000 fine and five months of jail time – to send the message that no one is above the law.

The arrogant and irresponsible minister probably thought he was both immune to Covid-19 and the law. As exposed by former minister Teresa Kok, Mohd Khairuddin could potentially spread the virus to hundreds – even thousands of people – largely because the minister has been attending dozens of functions or programmes as early as three days after his return from Turkey.

He could cripple the entire government due to his attendance in Parliament on July 13 – just six days after his arrival from Turkey, the world’s 18th most infected country. But that was not the best part of the double standard practised by Muhyiddin government. The best part was that Minister Mohd Khairuddin was accompanied by his family during the trip.

Perhaps the minister could bulldoze his argument that he enjoyed exclusive immunity. But are all his family members also immune to the law and virus? Did the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act 1988 say that “special Covid-19 test” is not only applicable to the prime minister, ministers and VIPs, but also that their family members are exempt from 14-day medical quarantine?

Was the minister and his family members made to wear the infamous pink wristband to begin with? It doesn’t matter whether Mohd Khairuddin and his families are proven to be healthy now. The key here is that he had broken the law, hence he must be punished accordingly. If not, can ordinary people use the same argument – that they were tested negative – to avoid quarantine?

PM Muhyiddin cannot hide and keep silent because eventually he has to answer why a 72-year-old woman, Nur Emah Mohamad Hashim, was jailed one day and fined RM8,000 for violating a home quarantine order, but his minister can escape any punishment. In the same breath, Minister Mohd Khairuddin cannot hide forever by passing the ball to the Health Ministry.

Muhyiddin’s buddy, Perlis Mufti Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin, announced recently that breaching regulations is not only wrong in law, but a big sin because it endangers the lives of others and against the teachings of Prophet Muhammad SAW in dealing with an epidemic. As one of the leaders of PAS Islamist party, does not that mean Mohd Khairuddin has committed a sin against Islamic teaching? – Finance Twitter